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ICC Note: Two Vietnamese Catholic human rights activists were beaten and detained by Vietnamese police on Sunday while on the road home from Ho Chi Minh City. According to reports, more than 10 police officers stopped their vehicle and forced the men to exit their car where they were beaten and taken to the local station for question. While detained the police wrote a report stating one of the men violated his probation even though he was not on probation for the charge of ‘overthrowing the government’. in August of 2015, a celebration in honor of Nhat’s release from his prison sentence in 2011 was met with similar violence as those in attendance were beaten by police as well. These actions are but another example of why Vietnam should return to being listed as a Country of Particular Concern by the US Commission on International Religious Freedom.  

11/10/2015 Vietnam (Radio Free Asia) – Vietnamese police beat and detained two activists on Sunday in the town of Dinh Van as they traveled from Ho Chi Minh City to their homes in a village in a Central Highlands province in the latest incident of harassment against defenders of human rights.

One of the two men, Tran Minh Nhat, told RFA’s Vietnamese Service that more than 10 policemen stopped his car around 6 a.m., forced him to get out, beat him and took him to the local police station.

They also took Chu Manh Son, who was with Nhat, to the police station as the pair was heading to their homes in Da Don village, Lam Ha district, in Lam Dong province.

“They wrote up a report that I violated a probation I was under,” Nhat said. “Their evidence was that they went to my house but did not see me there. I told them that I was not on any probation, because the court did not sentence me to it and that I never admitted to any crime related to overthrowing the government, so that any sentence in prison or probation wasn’t valid in my case.”

He also said he reported to authorities that he would go to Ho Chi Minh City for a health checkup, receive a certificate, buy some items and attend a service.

“Even though I am not under any probation, I still reported my activities to the authorities in a respectful manner, even though they themselves do not respect the law,” he said.

The human rights journalist who works for the Vietnam Redemptorist News was arrested in August 2011, and sentenced to four years in prison and three years of house arrest.

When he was released in August of this year, four human rights defenders, including Chu Manh Son, were beaten by police and unidentified individuals after a celebration marking Nhat’s release.

During his recent interrogation, Nhat remained silent and prayed, he said.

The police forced him to cooperate with them, but he was determined not to continue talking to them, he said.

They accused Nhat of following a priest from the Catholic Redemptorist church, which they said is against the state, and of receiving money to betray the country, he said.

(Full Article)